Structural processes at slow-spreading ridges

John C. Mutter, Jeffrey A. Karson

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

184 Scopus citations


Slow-spreading (<35 millimeters per year) mid-ocean ridges are dominated by segmented, asymmetric, rifted depressions like continental rifts. Fast-spreading ridges display symmetric, elevated volcanic edifices that vary in shape and size along axis. Deep earthquakes, major normal faults, and exposures of lower crustal rocks are common only along slow-spreading ridges. These contrasting features suggest that mechanical deformation is far more important in crustal formation at slow-spreading ridges than at fast-spreading ridges. New seismic images suggest that the nature and scale of segmentation of slow-spreading ridges is integral to the deformational process and not to magmatic processes that may control segmentation on fast-spreading ridges.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)627-634
Number of pages8
Issue number5070
StatePublished - 1992
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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